Devotees tormented by worldly afflictions would often unburden their minds to Sri Ramakrishna. They would seek his advice as to how to cross the ocean of Samsara. Sri Ramakrishna, who was always sympathetic, would explain their predicament using a beautiful analogy.
Ordinary or third class compartments in trains are generally very crowded. Such a large number of people board the train and enter into the compartment that it becomes overcrowded very soon. At one point of time it would be impossible to squeeze in more passengers. Then, usually the doors of the compartment are locked and people can neither get in nor get out till a major destination is reached. Sri Ramakrishna would compare the plight of worldly people to such passengers. They have somehow entered this world or Samsara and got so enmeshed into it that they find it impossible to get out. However torturous and difficult the life in the world might be, yet people have no clue as to how to get out of this mess called Samsara. This is the plight of worldly-minded people.
This is because they are yet to develop any taste for a higher life or a life beyond the body or mind. But, somehow due to repeated blows received in the life of the world if one develops even in a small measure a Godward tendency, such people should be considered truly blessed. It means they are awakening to their true purpose of life or life’s destination. They start spiritual practices or Sadhana in right earnest and slowly march forward. The more they perform Sadhana, the more they develop the strength to bear worldly afflictions, sorrows and sufferings. Ultimately, by the grace of God they develop a capacity to completely overcome the difficulties of worldly existence. For such people the ultimate goal of life or the vision of God is a certainty. They are sure to cross the ocean of Samsara.